Townsend, Tennessee - Fly Fishing in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, East Tennessee and Western North Carolina

Right now, Little River is flowing at 307 cubic feet per second (cfs) or 2.20 feet on the flow gauge.  Median flow for this date is 301 cfs.  The water temperature is 60.3 degrees.

Fishing conditions are excellent.  That may change for the worse, depending on how much rain we get.  There is a good chance for rain, every day this week.  The National Weather Service thinks we may have heavy rain at times today.  They go on to say, continuing rain will saturate the soil and we have a chance for flooding later this week.  They say it is possible.  Another weather website does not mention heavy rain or any accumulation amounts.  Maybe we’ll be fine.  Maybe the streams will not be blown out.  Or, maybe they will.

We hope for the best.  Fishermen are traveling to the Smokies to fish this weekend.  Others are considering it, but waiting to see what happens.  We are holding a Nymphing Technique Class on Sunday.  At the shop, we are all watching the weather and the water levels closely this week.

Fishing has been very good.  This weekend, anglers found all they needed was a Parachute Adams and a good drift.  The trout are eager.  They are hungry.  The conditions have been perfect, with water temperatures in the 50’s and flows that are normal.  Now, we’ll wait and see what happens.

Paula and I thought about fishing today.  Now, we’ve decided to wait until tomorrow.  We plan to fish as often as we can.  When we can, is dependent on the weather.  Since we fly fish for smallmouth bass on the lakes in a boat, wind is a huge determining factor.  Rain and thunderstorms are another.  I have a clear schedule in April and May, by design.  Last week was windy and this week is wet.  We went one day last week and got blown around, making it almost impossible to fly fish.

I don’t mind fishing in the rain, especially when I have a dry truck nearby, and I’m wade fishing.  To me, it’s different when you are fly fishing in a boat, on a lake.  Having rain pounding on you all day with no chance for a break gets old pretty quick.  If thunderstorms are in the forecast, we are always watching the sky.  What we prefer is light wind and cloudy skies.  When we have those days, we will be on the lake.

We fly fish exclusively, but really, fishing is fishing.  I am always interested in news, stories and photos provided by anglers who fish differently than I do.  We have a lot of those people living in Townsend, more conventional tackle fishermen, than fly fishermen.

I stopped by the IGA, yesterday after work.  Ronnie, our police chief was talking to another man outside the store.  I knew the conversation they were having had something to do with fishing.  It always does.  Ronnie is an avid walleye angler.  We have some great walleye fishing here.  The other man, fishes for catfish, and even participates in catfish tournaments.  I didn’t know they had catfish tournaments. 

The man showed us a photo of a catfish, he caught recently in a tournament, that was the winning fish.  It weighed over 50 pounds.  Since there is a limit of one catfish over a certain length, these participants weigh in only one fish.  After that, the big cats are released.

A lot of crappie fishermen come in our store to buy materials to make their jigs.  I can usually tell, by their fly tying material selection, they are crappie fishermen.  I like talking to those folks.  Their fishing is different from my fishing in some ways.  And, in other ways, we are similar.  I like to hear their stories, techniques, and interestingly, how they build and sink attractors in the lakes.  Some crappie fishermen, keep track of how many they catch, all year.  And, they know those numbers at any given time.  One fisherman may say he has caught 784 this year, while another quotes a lower or higher number.

Where we live, there are many impoundments, nine of them I think, within a short drive from here.  We have rivers, big rivers like the Tennessee and the Little Tennessee rivers.  We have smaller lowland rivers.  The Little River and Little Pigeon River are two but there are many more.  Then, we have the tailwaters below dams.  Additionally, we can add hundreds of miles of mountain trout streams to the list, in the Great Smokies and the National Forests.  It is no wonder, we have so many fishermen living here.  The fishermen are as diverse as the waters we have available to fish.  If you like fishing, we’ve got something close by, for you to enjoy.

I apologized to Ronnie about the incident they responded to at our store this week.  Somebody accidentally activated a distress signal to our security company.  When that happens, the police are immediately dispatched.  Frank and Ronnie both responded.  The security company called me at home.  The police arrived, not knowing what to expect.  That has never happened at our store.

It did happen at our bank recently.  Ronnie responded to that one.  That usually indicates an armed robbery.  In that case like in ours, it was accidental.  It is comforting to know, you can just trip a switch, and the police will arrive shortly, with no warning.  We have that same feature at our home.

To my knowledge, we have never had an armed robbery in Townsend, at least not during the past 30+ years.  During that time we have had only one murder.  That happened a few weeks ago.  Our community, is pretty much, crime free.  Our community is safe.  We all like living here and that is one more reason why.

Have a great day and thank you for being here with us.

Byron Begley
April 15, 2015

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